MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Joining hands and focusing on faith, district and community leaders gathered Thursday at the National Civil Rights Museum for a back to school prayer breakfast.
Hosted by the Campaign for School Equity, the group gathered with a mission to create unity and impact change.
"It's important that when they come through the doors on Monday that they are welcomed by not only their school leaders and teachers, but also their community and knowing that the city of Memphis is standing behind them," Dr. Lori Phillips, Shelby County Schools Director of Family and Community Engagement, said.
"We are focusing as a city and even as a school district on one common message. We know that many of the challenges that our students and even our schools face cannot be resolved with the school alone addressing those issues," Dr. Sharon Griffin, Assistant Commissioner of School Turnaround and Chief of Achievement School District, said.
Some of those challenges mentioned included poverty, building community relationships, and improving school performance.
Griffin and Phillips commissioned leaders to get on the front lines in the battle for equitable education and opportunity.
"We also want the entire city, our faith based community, and all of our teachers, parents, and leaders to be supported and making sure our students have those needs addressed," Griffin said.
"We understand with a gathering like this the importance of it, and already rallying together to know that we get better together," Phillips said.
Campaign for School Equity Director Mendell Grinter said the answer to a successful school year is partnership.
"Special thanks to our partners at SCS and ASD because what we really wanted to do is, how that these are all of our children and how can we be supportive and say this is what they need this year, this is how we're going to help as a community because as the old saying goes 'it takes a village,'" Grinter said.